Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafemuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary

GUEST,Suibhne Astray 15 Feb 12 - 05:55 AM
Jim McLean 15 Feb 12 - 06:18 AM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 15 Feb 12 - 06:24 AM
Jim McLean 15 Feb 12 - 06:32 AM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 15 Feb 12 - 07:12 AM
ian1943 15 Feb 12 - 07:47 AM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 15 Feb 12 - 08:09 AM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 15 Feb 12 - 08:29 AM
ian1943 15 Feb 12 - 11:18 AM
Wheatman 15 Feb 12 - 01:16 PM
GUEST,Suibhne Astray 16 Feb 12 - 04:24 AM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:





Subject: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 05:55 AM

Tomorrow (Thursday 16th February 2012) marks the 130th anniversary of the Trimdon Grange mining disaster of Thursday 16th of February 1882 in which 74 men and boys lost their lives. The event was famously commemorated in song by the great Tommy Armstrong, the pitman's poet of Tanfield, near Stanley, recognised in the area (& beyond) as a master of his traditional craft, with The Trimdon Grange Explosion being held in especial regard by both folkies and non-folkies alike. Indeed, my first exposure to the song was via an obscure B-side by Alan Price dating back to 1969. Listening to it now it still thrills me as much as it did when I was maybe seven or eight; a big powerful pop arrangement worthy of Scott Walker or the Woodbine and Ivy Band:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Id2zIWwBCUU

More muted approaches prove equally affecting - Maureen Craik's performance on the old Topic Tommy Armstrong of Tyneside (sic) album from 1965 is damn near definitive in this respect. To quote A. L. Lloyd from the sleeve-note of that album: It was once said, by a foreign scholar, that folk song represents the handsome starlit night of the labouring people, and mass songs represent the raw and realistic light of day. If that is so, Tommy Armstrong might be seen on tiptoe in the half light crowing like a cock to herald the dawn.

For those unfamiliar with the song:

Let's not think of to-morrow,
Lest we disappointed be;
All our joys may turn to sorrow,
As we all may daily see.
Today we're strong and healthy,
But how soon there comes a change,
As we may see from the explosion,
That has been at Trimdon Grange.

Men and boys left home that morning,
For to earn their daily bread,
Little thought before that evening
They'd be numbered with the dead;
Let us think of Mrs. Burnett,
Once had sons but now has none,
With the Trimdon Grange explosion,
Joseph, George and James are gone.

February left behind it
What will never be forgot;
Weeping widows, helpless children,
May be found in many a cot.
Little children, kind and loving,
From their homes each day would run;
For to meet their father's coming,
As each hard day's work was done.

Now they ask if father's left them,
Then the mother hangs her head;
With a weeping widow's feelings,
Tells the child its father's dead.
Homes that once were blest with comfort,
Guided by a father's care,
Now are solemn, sad and gloomy,
Since the father is not there.

God protect the lonely widow,
Help to raise each drooping head;
Be a Father to the orphans,
Never let them cry for bread.
Death will pay us all a visit,
They have only gone before;
We may meet the Trimdon victims
Where explosions are no more.


*

A touching detail here is the naming of the three Burnett brothers. In rooting around online earlier I found their names in a roll of the Trimdon victims:

Joseph Whitfield Burnett - 22 - Hewer.        
George Colling Burnett - 19 - Putter.
James White Burnett - 17 - Landing miner.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: Jim McLean
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 06:18 AM

Amazingly I was just researching this disaster. My wife's ancestors on her mother's side came from Wales and as a young boy of 16, her great grandfather, Edward Davies, boarded at a house in Trimdon Grange (1861 census) with a family called Edwards whose head of house was a coal-miner. Edward Davies was also was a coal-miner but escaped the disaster.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 06:24 AM

There's a fair few Welsh miners in the roll of victims, Jim:

http://www.durhamrecordsonline.com/literature/TrimdonDisaster.html

In fact, it's quite a cosmopilitan list really, with Liverpudlian, Cornish and Irish miners in there too.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: Jim McLean
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 06:32 AM

My wife comes from Durham city and on both sides of her family, paternal, maternal lines etcetera there were miners. I was relieved to see none of her relatives were in any of the many pit disasters which occurred in the 19th century. A very sad time.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 07:12 AM

A very sad time.

I grew up in the shadow of the Hartley Pit Disaster of 16th January 1862 which claimed 220 men & boys, some as young as 10. Even though I was born 101 years after the event it still lived on in the memory of the old communities, and even now a visit to the graves and memorial in the churchyard at Earsdon is a profound experience, remembering the tales of the disaster and the mass funeral I grew up with as a kid. Joseph Skipsy is the poet in this case, and although long familiar with the poem, I've never heard it sung, although maybe it ought to be: as Bunting said: ...the facts of Skipsey's life are useful, not as Burne-Jones thought, to excuse his shortcomings though his shortcomings are plain, but to define his qualities, which, perhaps, the historians of literature have failed to perceive.

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the Hartley disaster.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: ian1943
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 07:47 AM

I will be singing the song on Thursday night in the Tap and Spile in Durham, not far from Trimdon!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 08:09 AM

I'll be singing it on Friday in Preston, Ian... such a long way from home!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 08:29 AM

Come to think of it, Ian - that's about as high as it gets on the old DCFC point scale isn't it?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: ian1943
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 11:18 AM

Certainly is, Sean, to the day!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: Wheatman
Date: 15 Feb 12 - 01:16 PM

I wish I was in the Tap and Spile to night. I will think of you all there. It is always a competition between me and Christine as to who sings Trimbdon Grange, so I guess we share it. gan canny brian


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Trimdon Grange - 130th Anniversary
From: GUEST,Suibhne Astray
Date: 16 Feb 12 - 04:24 AM

Here's my own take on the song, recorded just yesterday.

http://soundcloud.com/sedayne-fiddlesangs/the-trimdon-grange-explosion


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 17 October 6:20 AM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.